The day began with a heavily requested lie in (08:30) which was savoured by all as there was no certainty we would get another one. The team then split into groups to see what Luang Prabang had to offer for breakfast, some of us got very disappointing bacon sandwiches (1 rasher of bacon, what joke) whilst others opted for more traditionally local dishes like noodle soup.
Once breakfast was over we began to make our way to an ancient Buddhist site in the city called
Phu Shi and all that stood between us and it where 300 agonising steps. Flashback to the trek ensued. (Ed. Those on the China trip a few years back would have had serious flash backs to Emi Shan.)
However once we reached the top it all seemed worth it as the view stretched for miles reaching the border of the city, the Mekong River and beyond. However our joy was short lived as cliff decided that now was a good time to do our press-ups. (Ed. We have to make it spectacular! J)
Despite this our spirits were soon lifted again when we heard that Charlie had spotted some football pitches and after our crushing defeat to the locals in Sapa we knew this was a chance for us to better ourselves. So we headed on over under the guidance of Charlie and despite an arduous trip and beginning to lose hope of finding them we finally stumbled upon them, it was then we realised the pitches belonged to a school however the calling of a game of football was too much and nothing was going to stop us from getting in, so we found a way, split ourselves into 2 teams and the match kicked off.
The game was between shirts and shirtless and after a few minutes of middle of the park build up it didn’t take long for shirts to take the lead after Jack woods played a lovely ball to Jack Stephens who ran in and slotted it away. And although the shirtless team came close with a corner the shirts broke away and put in another and then did so another two times so by half time the score was 4-0 to shirts. It must’ve been the sun on our bear skin. However the half time break did us no good as shirts quickly put another 2 in. So as a last ditch effort we just called goal the winner. But that did no good either as shirts put in the winner within a minute of the call been made. Heavily disappointed, sweating and some slightly sunburnt we headed back to the hostel to relax until dinner and the air conditioning in our rooms.
We split for dinner however most of us ended up at the same place “Farenheit bar and restaurant”, not far from the Guesthouse, despite a long wait most enjoyed the food. We then once again hit the night market and it was just as if not more lively than the night before. Large groups of many different cultures mixing and interchanging stories and experiences the sound of prices being negotiated, it truly is an indescribable experience. We made sure to make the most of our last time there and splashed the cash on almost anything we came across in the heat of the moment it seemed like we needed it all. (Ed. The next three night markets will no doubt see more cash…)
We all then made our way home, with only one minor incident our tuktuk driver didn’t know where we were staying and it was only thanks to Baileys amazing recollection of all the cities streets that we managed to make our way back to try to mentally prepare ourselves for the long day of travel ahead.